Conference Agenda






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Session Descriptions

9 a.m. - 9:50 a.m.
  • How to Gamify Learning with an Escape Room?
    Nancy Kaida and Gwen Davis - Northwest Vista College

This presentation is a live-action timed game combining physical and digital resources. The best way to learn about escape rooms is to experience it.  Join us as 5 lucky participants show off their critical thinking/problem-solving team-based abilities as they unite to figure out trivia, puzzles, riddles, layered with various elements to open specialty locks.  Other participants will observe the team.  Then, we will share how these techniques can be applied in your classroom for any subject.  

  • Apple and Accessibility: Make it Yours
    Trece White and Dr. Amanda Orndorff - Apple

When products are designed to be accessible, more people can do what they love. Powerful assistive features are built into Apple products to complement vision, hearing, motor skills, learning, and literacy, so users can create, learn, work, play, and do pretty much anything they want to do, wherever they want to do it, more easily than ever.

Learn tips, tricks and how tos for accessibility features built into every Apple product. Today’s session will focus on iPads. To learn more, visit:

  • Visual Representations of Language: Text-to-image A.I. systems as Multi-Modal Learning Tools
    David Hale - San Antonio College

With the recent popularity of text-to-image A.I. systems, educators have been gifted a new tool to support essay composition through visual representation. This session will model the use of craiyon, a text-to-image A.I. as a way for educators to transform student thesis statements into visual images for analysis and discussion.

  • Democratizing In-Demand Skills with Digital Badges
    Amber O’Casey, Dr. Eryn Berger - Alamo Colleges District

Learners want better jobs, and employers need workers, but the skills gap is often too wide to cross. Join this session to learn how skills-based micro-credentials and digital badges can democratize in-demand skills and increase students' job competitiveness.

  • Student Success Data in Remote Learning (mini-session)
    Ashley Click, - San Antonio College

Are you interested in how students performed in their remote learning courses? In Spring of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic forced educational systems to transition into an emergency remote learning modality due to the health concerns brought on by the pandemic. Prior to this transition, remote learning was widely unfamiliar and little academic research had been published regarding student academic performance in this modality. The data from this quantitative study compares retention and productive grade rate of two 16-week academic semesters that utilized different learning modalities. The study population is drawn from the courses History, English and Speech at San Antonio College. These courses are populated with first time in college students who are considered a vulnerable population in regards to persistence.

  • Humanizing Virtual Exchanges,
    Mariela Cadena and LaTanya Kurney, - Alamo Colleges District (mini-session)

The mini-session will introduce Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) and the mobility abroad component (COIL + GO) as a comprehensive internationalization tool that can be implemented into any classroom. The session will include information about the AlamoCOIL Village, COIL + Go and the benefits of virtual exchange for students and faculty. Faculty from the five Colleges and from any discipline are encouraged to attend and will also have an opportunity to submit questions concerning COIL prior to the session.

10 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.
  • Introduction to Microsoft Teams,
    Abigail Garcia - Palo Alto College

Looking for an easy way to connect with colleagues across campus? Join us in learning about Microsoft Teams through a live demo. This workshop is perfect for those wanting to know how to use Teams and its various features. These include instant messaging, video and audio calls, and shared files.

  • iPads in the Classroom
    Trece White and Dr. Amanda Orndorff - Apple

Apple's iPad enables educators and students everywhere to be more productive and collaborative. Explore built in features that increase collaboration and help develop innovative experiences for your students. We will also highlight how iPads can serve as a multipurpose learning tool and be customized for different learning styles.

  • Moving Beyond the Essay: Digital Papers and Peer Reviews (mini-session)
    Dr. Mary Dixson - UTSA

Traditional essay assignments often feel out of touch to students, failing to represent the types of reading and learning they encounter daily. At the same time, digital literacy is an essential component of education. This presentation offers examples of how to use digital media design programs like Adobe Express or Google Sites to move beyond traditional typed documents and toward visually appealing papers with graphics, photos, and video links. Students share their work more easily with and can make revisions for improvement. The visual elements increase student interest and engagement in writing while teaching digital literacy skills.

  • Improved Learning Outcomes and Engagement Using Practical Virtual Reality
    Dr. Basu Panthi, Dr. Jo D Duncan, and Spencer Galvan - St. Philip’s College

The incorporation of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technology has the potential to positively impact the delivery of course content by providing distraction-free, low-stress, high-reward learning activities.  It is hoped that the use of VR will result in increased student success, higher enrollment in courses, and more interest in majoring or minoring in the subject of choice.  Attendees at this panel will experience a variety of ways that VR and AR are currently being implemented and researched at St. Philip’s College. Presenters will give an overview of VR and AR in education and will especially focus on the practical application of VR and AR in face-to-face and digital classrooms. This panel will demonstrate free and low-cost VR/AR programs for some college courses that are especially useful for concept practice, improved outcomes, and student engagement.

  • Digital Accessibility & UDL: How do they work together?
    Yvonne Galindo - San Antonio College
    Amy Gates - Alamo Colleges District

These courses will focus on topics of accessibility awareness, the laws and course design for faculty. Components of this training will include:

o          Accessibility Basics Overview

o          Universal Design for Learning  (UDL)

o          Basic Built-in Canvas tools for Accessibility

o          Accessibility Plug-in tools for Canvas

  • Simple Syllabus Crash Course
    Dr. Bobbie Myatt - Alamo Colleges District

The Alamo Colleges are migrating to Simple Syllabus in the Spring. All faculty as of now, should have access to begin building your syllabus in the new platform. Come join this "simple" presentation on best practices for migrating your syllabi from Concourse and building your syllabus in Simple Syllabus.

11 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.
  • Instructional Technologies:  Untapped Resources
    Reese Hearn and Jerryl Lowe, -  St. Philip’s College

There are instructional technologies (ITs) that are available to Alamo Colleges employees.  There are some they are aware of and some that they are not aware of.   The purpose of this presentation is to review the major ITs, their purpose, and the advantages of using them to promote student success and performance excellence.

  • Welcome to Open Education Global (OEG) Connect!
    Beatrice Canales - San Antonio College

"OEGlobal's community space for open educators." Learn to navigate with a self-paced / group activity inside OEG Connect. OEG Connect offers open practitioners of all levels to create openly licensed resources with advocates from all over the world.

  • Make Online Learning Personal
    Carlos Carrillo - Pima Community College

Inclusive online learning design that humanizes the experience and allows for the student to feel a sense of belonging within the course. Culturally relevant education in online courses has proven to promote student success. In this session, research will be presented that explores these topics and its implications for the classroom.

  • Improving Online Learning through ACUE
    Dr. Basu Panthi and Jamie Miranda - St. Philip’s CollegeDeb Font, Northwest Vista College, Dr. Carmen Macharaschwili, ACUE, Scott D’Amico - Alamo Colleges District

In this session, Dr. Carmen Macharaschwili will provide an overview of the work that the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE) has done to provide professional development for online instructors. She will highlight specific best practices and resources from the course. This overview will be followed by a panel of instructors that are currently engaged in the Alamo Colleges – ACUE courses. They will share stories of techniques they have implemented to connect, engage, and motivate their students in the online environment. Participants will then have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss what they learned in this session and leave prepared to implement a new pedagogical practice in their courses.

  • Video Killed the Boring Text Box
    Russ Wagner - Palo Alto College

Instructor created videos can be a great tool to increase student engagement, promote instructor presence and build community in the classroom.  In this session, you'll learn several simple ways to integrate videos in an on-line class (or any class using canvas). We will explore how to create and embed videos using the Canvas Rich Content Editor as well as Zoom/My Media. By the end of the session, you'll be able to make your own videos for course introductions/welcome, weekly updates, announcements, assignments and student feedback. 

  • Creating Better Remote Experiences with Prezi Video
    Elizabeth Plummer - Alamo Colleges District

Maximizing student engagement and learning takes center stage in Prezi Video using on-screen text, images, GIF’s, stickers, as well as the ability to import content from traditional slide programs (PowerPoint, Google Slides). Your content is placed right next to in your video screen allowing you the use of non-verbal cues, ability to point to specific items, answer questions live with text or images or a multitude of other ways that have been shown to elevate remote learning. This session will focus on how to effectively harness the power of Prezi Video through hands-on demonstrations and real-life examples of Prezi Video being used in the classroom.


1 p.m. - 1:50 p.m.
  • Starting Strong: First Impressions Online
    Mark Farris - Alamo Colleges District

This workshop will encourage participants to share best practices for creating first impressions with online students. This session will include strategies for what works with online students. From “brave statements” in the syllabus to Social Identity Wheel discussions, the facilitator will guide a discussion and provide guidance on how to start off with a strong first impression.

  • Reaching the Back of the Room in a Math Class
    Peter Sallay - San Jacinto College

 Nearpod is a powerful lesson presenter software with several interactive features.  Nearpod can be implemented in a face to face class or online class.   Students can work out a problem on paper, take a picture, and share what they wrote out.  You can give real time feedback or highlight student success by sharing the work with everyone in the room.  Nearpod allows instructors to create open ended questions, short quizzes, polls, discussion boards, and matching activities that review vocabulary and formulas.   At the end of class, you can download an engagement report that measures how active students were during class.

  • Using Electronic Flashcards for Fun in Learning (mini-session)
    Peter Sallay - San Jacinto College

Want to start class with a short review and teach good study skills?  Quizlet allows you to review recent topics using electronic flashcards.  After this session, Instructors will be able to create and use premade question sets.  You will be able to start class with short review sessions, and have races to match topics individually, in an organized group, or for extra fun “randomized” groups.  Students can use the resources you have collected to create a practice test, and study sets to prepare for an upcoming exam.

  • New Hope or New Burden? Community College Students and Online Learning
    Dr. Haetham Abdul-Razaq - Northwest Vista College

The current study explored the experiences of community college students with the rapid transition to online learning modality during and after the surge of COVID-19. Using a qualitative phenomenological design, the findings revealed that students faced numerous personal, environmental, and institutional challenges. This specific section of the findings discusses the best practices students found appealing to mitigate challenges associated with online learning. The humanitarian approach to course design, advising, and student services effectively support community college students during emergency learning and succeeding in online courses.

  • Faculty Perspectives on Best Practices Teaching Remote and Online Courses
    Dr. Luke Dowden, Chief Online Learning Officer - Alamo Colleges District

Over 40% of all active courses sections in Fall 2022 were fully online or remote through Zoom. With a growing number of students learning in a distance learning modality and an increased emphasis on student success in all course modalities, it is important to showcase voices from the frontlines - faculty. Chief Online Learning Officer, Dr. Luke Dowden, will moderate a session with faculty on the best practices each is using to create a sense of belonging and agency for digital learners, design a quality learning experience, and improve course completion and student success outcomes.

Northeast Lakeview College – Angela Hager
Northwest Vista College - Dr. Adriana Sherman
Palo Alto College – Rebecca Mendoza
San Antonio College – Dr. Amelia Serafine
St. Philip’s College – David Uminski

  • Turnitin Draft Coach
    Courtney Nicolaides - TurnitIn
    Lia Moore-Lamm - Alamo Colleges District

Turnitin compares each piece of student work against the industry’s biggest databases of internet sites, examples of student work from around the world and academic journal articles. We do that to help students avoid plagiarism.

Join this session to explore and discuss how to interpret a Similarity Report together with students and learn about Draft Coach, our new product that specifically allows students to develop their writing and investigation skills to check their own work for plagiarism as they write.

  • Help Your Students with Canvas New Analytics
    Amy Gates and Barbara Wong - Alamo Colleges District

Ever wish you had a bird’s-eye view of how students are doing in your online course? Come learn how to use the New Analytics tool to better track student participation and performance.

2 p.m. - 2:50 p.m.
  • Next Level Discussions and Discussion Boards
    Whitney Kilgore - iDesign

Sometimes it’s not about the tool but rather how you use it. Gone are the days of post by Wednesday and reply to 2 peers by Sunday discussion boards. How can you breathe some new energy into your discussion boards? Come find out.

  • Office-less Office Hours
    Dr. Chris Haugen - San Antonio College

Scheduling Office Hours can be an issue for some students and faculty. Email "ping-pong" can be tedious and discouraging. Moreover, our commuter students tend to have schedules and obligations that can make staying on campus or returning to campus difficult. By using the Calendar in Canvas and Zoom, we can set up an automatic appointment for Office Hours as well as flexible locations for our students. And ourselves.

  • Canva in the Classroom
    Dr. Lucinda G. Flores - Alamo Colleges District

Canva is a free graphic design tool specifically built for people to use with little to no graphic design experience. In this session, attendees will receive a quick introduction to the program and identify ways Canva can be used to increase student engagement and foster your students’ creativity.

  • Shhh! It's (not) a Secret! Lesser-Known Canvas Tips and Tricks
    Cesar Hernandez - Alamo Colleges District

During this Canvas Tips & Tricks session, we will reveal and illustrate for you a dozen (or more?) lesser-known features and time-saving strategies that can help you more successfully and more efficiently manage your Canvas course and connect with your students. We take time to explain and give use cases that may help the feature make more sense. Come to learn what you can and, if you have your own tip or trick, please, come and be prepared to share.

  • Increasing Equity and Inclusion in Zoom (mini-session)
    Dr. Veronica Morrison - San Antonio College

When Zoom decided in 2020 to focus on DEI, it looked at itself as an employer; it did not look at how its product could be more equitable for the end users. It is up to us to discover ways to make Zoom more equitable and inclusive. This presentation will provide suggestions and ask participants to share others of their own.

  • Simple Syllabus Crash Course
    Dr. Bobbie Myatt - Alamo Colleges District

The Alamo Colleges are migrating to Simple Syllabus in the Spring. All faculty as of now, should have access to begin building your syllabus in the new platform. Come join this "simple" presentation on best practices for migrating your syllabi from Concourse and building your syllabus in Simple Syllabus.